BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Getting any man to pay attention to his health isn't easy. That's something Bills tight end Lee Smith and his teammates are trying to change.
"Every man should get checked. It's something that affects too many and takes too many lives not to make sure you're in the clear," said Smith.
All month long, NFL stadiums and the players themselves will be covered in pink to promote the fight against Breast Cancer. But Tuesday, for the third straight year, Ralph Wilson Stadium will be blue. The stadium is hosting "Know Your Statistics," a free prostate cancer screening event sponsored by the Bills and Roswell Park Cancer Institute.
"It's the most common cancer in men these days," explained Dr. Tom Schwaab from Roswell Park.
One in seven men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer. Schwaab says the disease can be aggressive, but says it's easily treated if caught early.
"Men tend to be not as proactive as women when it comes to their healthcare and that's what this program is all about," he explained.
Schwaab says prostate cancer can be diagnosed easily through a short physical exam and a blood test known as a PSA. Screenings should start at age 50. African American men or those with a family history should begin screening 10 years earlier.
"Once you hit age 40, you should at the very least begin to discuss prostate screening with your family doctor," Schwaab said.
Treatment for prostate cancer can be as simple as active surveillance, but that's only if it's diagnosed in the early stages.
"There are so many men who have this disease, have this cancer, and don't even know it," said Smith.
For Smith, encouraging men to pay attention to their health is personal. His father, Daryle Smith, played six seasons in the NFL. Soon after checking into a hospital in 2011, he slipped into a coma and died at age 47.
"He was big, strong and healthy, all that stuff and his body got attacked. And anyone's body can get attacked," said Smith.
He hopes donating his time will help others catch a problem they may not know they have before it’s too late.
"If that helps to get an extra guy out here to get checked out, than great. I guess that's my involvement. I don't know who wants to come out here and see me, but hopefully at least one person will show up," he said.